WASHINGTON — Tuesday’s elections may have delivered sweeping changes to the makeup of the U.S. Senate, but the same Jeff Sessions returned to work post-election and continued hammering President Obama for his plan to grant executive amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants.
“(On Election Day), the American people rebelled against the President’s executive amnesty and rallied behind GOP candidates who promised to put the needs of the American people first,” Sessions said. “It is shocking then that the President would declare that the only way ‘those executive actions go away,’ is to ‘send me a bill that I can sign.’ Otherwise, the President warned, he would ‘act in the absence of action by Congress.’
“Of course, Congress has acted, and so have the American people. Republicans, and the voters who sent us here, rejected the Obama-Democrat legislation to give work permits to illegal immigrants and to surge already-record immigration rates. The President cannot, having had his policies defeated at the ballot box, impose them through executive decree.”
Although the President has long been a vocal advocate of amnesty and has frequently stated that he would take executive action to achieve it, Sessions latest response was brought on by a press conference Obama held on Wednesday, during which he pledged to push forward with his plan, in spite of the repudiation his Party was delivered at the ballot box.
“Before the end of the year, we’re going to take whatever lawful actions that I can take that I believe will improve the functioning of our immigration system,” he said. “I’ll be reaching out to… Republican, as well as Democratic, leaders to find out how it is that they want to proceed… But what I’m not going to do is just wait.”
Conservatives have been fiercely critical of the handful of Senate Republicans who joined with Democrats to pass last year’s comprehensive immigration reform bill crafted by the so called “Gang of Eight.”
On Wednesday, Sessions said that this time his colleagues are unified in rejecting the president’s plan.
“A Republican Congress will defend itself and our citizens from these lawless actions,” he said. “Surrendering to illegality is not an option. Democrats will have to choose sides: protect the President’s agenda, or protect your constituents.
“Americans do not want their borders erased. What they have asked for is an agenda that promotes higher wages, reforms government, eliminates failed programs, balances the budget, increases energy production, and protects their sovereignty.”
Follow Cliff on Twitter @Cliff_Sims